Coco is a celebrity. Tens of thousands view her webcam each month for the chance to get a glimpse of her. She has dozens of public appearances under her wing, and is a frequent mentioned in blogs. She even recently starred on a popular television talk show. But when she is not strutting her stuff in the public eye, Coco prefers to make herself at home in the backyard of a small Massachusetts farm.
Coco is a bantam White Leghorn chicken who stars as "Tillie" in Terry Golson's entertaining children's book, Tillie Lays an Egg. The book has delighted children and adults alike with its wonderful staged photographs of Terry's chickens posing with her extensive collection of vintage items, including antique toys and chicken-themed tschotchkes.
On April 2, 2010, Coco made her first television debut on The Martha Stewart Show. Martha, who has been raising chickens in her own backyard for more than 30 years, was enthralled with what Terry's chickens can do. "How do you get the chickens to pose for the pictures in the book?" she asks. Terry explains that she trains them very easily using a target stick and their favorite food. "Chickens are very food motivated," she tells Martha. Coco loves Cheerios, and Terry demonstrates that when Coco looks at the target, a click lets her know that that she has earned her treat.
Thank you to Terry and Coco for giving America a birds-eye view of clicker training and for showing us that with the help of a clicker and a handful of Cheerios, there's no limit to what this chick can do.
Watch Terry and Coco on The Martha Stewart Show and check out Terry's blog for a behind-the-scenes account of their television debut. Want to know what Coco is up to now? You can see Coco and all of her fine-feathered friends on Terry's live-streaming HenCam.